Doors are a burglar's favourite entry and exit point, so make sure your doors have good-quality locks and security devices. As your windows are also vulnerable, it's a good idea to fit them with locks that are suited to their particular style or type.
Types Of Locks - Door Locks
There are a wide variety of door locks available to purchase; the best choice for your home will be dependent on the type and material of door, and level of security required.
Mortice sashlock (for use with timber doors)
A mortice sashlock combines a mortice lock and a handle-operated latch mechanism. This means you can open and shut the door without having to use a key, and lock it securely with a key when you go out. Sashlocks come with different security levels - a 3 lever is mid level and 5 lever is the highest level of security. 5 lever sashlocks are typically used on back doors or where security needs to be high. 3 lever locks can be used on internal doors that require a lock with a key. Make sure that any mortice lock you buy is made to British Standard BS3621 and carries the British Standard kitemark.
Mortice deadlock (for use with timber doors)
A deadlock is typically used on front doors in conjunction with a nightlatch and has a bolt only, operated by a key. The deadlock is fitted at about waist hight in the door, giving additional security and allows you to lock the door from the inside and outside.
Nightlatch (for use with timber doors)
A nightlatch is used to secure front doors or other external entrance doors. The nightlatch is mounted on the inside of the door at about shoulder height and has a latch mechanism similar to those used on internal doors to keep the door closed. The latch is spring loaded and withdraws into the casing as you turn the knob to allow you to open the door, but you can close the door by simply pushing it into the frame – a sort of ‘slam to lock’. A rim cylinder has to be fitted to the outside of the door, which attaches to the nightlatch through a hole in the door. Turning a key in the cylinder operates the latch, allowing you to open the door from the outside. There are many types of nightlatches available and if you are securing an external door, always look for a British Standard nightlatch to ensure a high level of security. Fit a mortice deadlock to the door for added security.
Rim cylinder (for use with timber doors)
A rim cylinder is a surface mounted key turning mechanism that works with a brass barrel that fits in a hole drilled through the door, which is connected to a nightlatch. A rim cylinder is always used in conjunction with a nightlatch. It allows you to open the front door from the outside using a key, which turns the latch on the inside. New nightlatches usually come complete with a rim cylinder, but you can buy replacement rim cylinders if needed.
Euro cylinder (for use with PVCu doors)
A euro cylinder forms an integral part of many types of locks including multi-point locks used on PVCu doors and some mortice locks used on timber doors. Euro cylinders can be easily replaced and changing the cylinder is an easy way to 'change the locks'. Before you buy, you need to ensure you know what type, size and security of cylinder you require.
There are three basic types of euro cylinder:
• Single Cylinder - Euro profile single cylinders offer key access from one side only
• Double Cylinder - Euro profile double cylinders offer key access from both sides of the door
• Double Cylinder with Thumbturn - Euro profile Thumbturn cylinders offer key access from one side and a thumbturn from the other side of the door.
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